Seasick Steve @ Canon’s Marsh Amphitheatre, Bristol – 26/06/2015

Honestly, I was not expecting anything special from this show. I thought I’d just go along, see a good musician and songwriter play some electric blues on a series of home made guitars and then go home. And that all happened, but I also saw one of the coolest shows for a long time.

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Seasick Steve has built a massive name for himself in a notably short length of time, and he’s also managed to get that rare trick of holding several thousand people one every word or every note. He strolled onto the stage, drummer flanking, sat down on a cushioned kitchen chair and after they’d both swigged from a bottle of Red each they just kicked into life. I knew Seasick Steve was a brilliant musician but I’d not expected such an entertaining performer. The set was only fourteen songs but spread over two hours, and strewn with extended jams, life stories and serenades. “Don’t Know Why She Love Me But She Do” was a particular favourite to appear. His popularity was breathing throughout the crowd; after the first song (“Dog House Boogie”) a guy yelled “Steve! I’m your son!” which may or may not be entirely possible.

At one point he was in the middle of explaining the story behind the song “Barracuda ‘68” when his amp suddenly crackled and basically blew up on stage. He turned calmly to the mic and exclaimed “I think this thing just broke.” Later in the show the same thing happened to a guitar. His handling of the whole evening would be enough to convince you that he lives at this venue and this was just a house party. He is also a massively modest man, and could not stop thanking the crowd, the crew and even the country for his career.

A night of favourites, stories and generally good vibes.

Rich Lavery

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